Fujian closed 112 karaoke bars, dance clubs for safety inspections

Updated: 2009-02-05
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East China's Fujian Province has ordered closure of all entertainment venues in Changle City where 15 revelers were killed in a bar fire Saturday.

In all, 112 public venues including karaoke bars, dance clubs and recreational centers were closed as of Sunday for safety inspections, said a source from Fuzhou City Government.

It is not immediately known when the closure will end. Changleis a county-level city administered by Fuzhou, the provincial capital of Fujian Province.

Fuzhou City Government had an urgent meeting on work safety Sunday. All departments and localities were briefed on the deadly fire and told to carry out inspections for potential fire hazards at places of entertainment.

A Latin-style bar and restaurant in Changle City caught fire around 11:55 p.m., after 10 young men and women at a birthday party set off fireworks on their table. Fifteen people were confirmed dead and another 24 were injured. Three remain in critical condition in the hospital.

Police detained seven bar managers including an owner surnamed Zheng, who rented the building from the Changle Real Estate Company in April last year. They are still being held pending an investigation into the incident.

Police also arrested seven people who allegedly caused the tragedy by setting off fireworks. Their identities have not been released.

No one has been charged so far.

Saturday was the last day of the week-long holiday marking the Spring Festival, or the Chinese Lunar New Year, which fell on Jan.26. It is typically celebrated with fireworks.

Source: Xinhua

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